From the writings of the Rev. Billy Graham

Dear Dr. Graham:

Are there really mansions in Heaven for everyone who goes there?

— H.H.

Dear H.H.: When Jesus said, “In my Father’s house are many mansions” (John 14:2, KJV), we find a very interesting meaning for the word mansion. The Greek word used does not mean an imposing house but a resting place. The expression is translated in the margin of the American Standard Version as “abiding places.”

During Christ’s ministry on earth He had no home. He once said, “Foxes have holes and birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay His head” (Matthew 8:20). His home in Heaven is not transitory, however, but permanent, and so will our heavenly home be permanent.

The early disciples knew little of home life, for they walked with Jesus for three years. They suffered in many ways, and Jesus knew it — for He suffered more severely than any of His followers. It was as if Jesus had said to them: “We have no lasting home here on earth, but my Father’s house is a home where we will be together for all eternity.”

Amid all the changes which sooner or later will come to break up the earthly home, we have the promise of a home where Christ’s followers will remain forever. The Apostle Paul wrote about being with the Lord forever (1 Thessalonians 4:17). Our permanent home is not here on earth. Our permanent home is Heaven.

Sometimes when things do not go right down here, we grow homesick for Heaven. Many times in the midst of the sin, suffering, and sorrow of this life there is a tug at our soul. That is homesickness coupled with anticipation.

Some believers are lying on hospital beds today; others are suffering from terrible diseases or financial loss or bereavement. They are longing for their permanent abiding place in the presence of their Savior and Lord.

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